The purpose of this research was to examine the role of agricultural
experience as a vehicle which can support the development of learners in
rural primary schools whose needs are extremely diverse, and whose life
experience has been enriched by agricultural practice. This involved a
review of literature which sought to investigate a \"new role\" for
agriculture as a key element of primary schooling. In particular it
examined from a conceptual point of view, and through the use of case
studies from the literature, the capacity of agriculture to act as a
familiar vehicle for the development of young rural learners' basic
skills of literacy, numeracy, and other life skills which are perceived
as necessary for a fruitful and productive life. The intention was not
to explore issues relating to teaching agriculture as a distinct subject
area in the curriculum.
In addition, case studies were carried out in four countries, Tanzania,
Sri Lanka, India and Ethiopia. These countries were selected because of
evidence that government policy was supportive of the concept of
contextualisation, even though this might not be stated explicitly.
Also, in each country, a co-researcher was identified who had published
work, or had some expertise, relating to the basic ideas underlying the
concepts of contextualised teaching and learning, and their
contributions became a key element in this research project.
Educational Paper No. 20, DFID, London, UK, ISBN 1 86192 45 8, 64 pp. (Vol.1) and ISBN 1 86192 050 4, 130 pp. (Vol. 2.)